The NYU College Democrats and Republicans engaged in a lively debate on the Iran Nuclear Deal and Capital Gains Tax on Monday. The debate was moderated by the Politics Society at NYU.
CAS sophomore and Monday night’s moderator, Michael Tingley said that each political club chose the topics up for debate. He said the Republicans chose to discuss the Iran deal while the Democrats wanted to debate on the capital gains tax.
The highly contested Iran Nuclear Deal would limit many of Iran’s nuclear programs by stopping the country’s acquisition of nuclear weapons and lifting economic sanctions on Iran.
CAS sophomore Elena Hatib argued on behalf of the Republicans and said the Iran Deal alienated important U.S. allies in the Middle East.
“The nuclear deal does not promote peace in the Middle East and estranges some of our most important allies like Israel and Turkey,” Hatib said. “It would also give more legitimacy to Iran’s nuclear program and makes it difficult to inspect nuclear sites and programs, especially the hidden ones. By making this deal, we are just encouraging other nations to increase their own nuclear stockpiles.”
CAS senior Laura Atkins gave a rebuttal on behalf of the Democrats.
“The deal also does not necessarily isolate allies, no one in Israel is concerned about the Iran Nuclear Deal,” Atkins said. “Saudi Arabia is worried about Iran, but only relation to oil, not nuclear weapons.”
The debate then shifted to capital gains, profits from a sale of capital assets, including real estate, stocks and bonds. The federal tax rate on capital gains depends on income, and increases with individual earnings.
CAS sophomore Fadumo Osman argued for the Democrats and said that capital gains taxes contribute to economic inequality in the U.S.
“There is a discrepancy in the discussion of the capital gains tax that has led to dangerous reality that 70 percent of capital gains are earned by the one percent,” Osman said. “We need to tax capital gains in a way that is comparable to taxing income to promote equality in this sector.”
Stern senior and Executive of the NYU Republicans Ben Swinehart spoke on the difference between income and capital gain.
“It’s very simple; capital gains are not earnings,” Swinehart said. “Income has already been taxed, and when you choose to invest that money, the government is simply trying to tax you again. You already earned it once. Your intellect to invest money properly need not be taxed.”
CAS sophomore Anna Power said the debates were a refreshing take on how young people discuss politics.
“I think this topics were very distinct and soliciting a strong opinion on both sides,” Power said. “It’s interesting to see people who agree and disagree with my beliefs articulate their ideas this way.”
Email Kati Garrity at [email protected]